Westminster Cathedral Catholic Soldiers Association Roll of Honour

Typical.  I have never in my life popped into the cathedral before, and when I do, this is what I find.  Scaffolding.  Still, it’s not the first time, and won’t be the last.

The first two panels remember men killed in World War II or the Korean War (above & left below).

The remaining six panels are all Great War casualties, and include two Victoria Cross holders.  Lieutenant Maurice Dease (right panel), Royal Fusiliers, was awarded a posthumous V.C. for his actions at Nimy Bridge during the Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914.  Although five men would receive the award that day, the first V.C.s of the war, Dease was the only one to die.  With Dease mortally wounded, Private Sidney Godfrey took over the machine gun with which Dease had been holding off the Germans, and continued to do so as his colleagues retreated.  Wounded twice, Godfrey was finally captured and would spend the next four years as a prisoner-of-war.  He too was awarded the Victoria Cross.  Maurice Dease, aged 24, is buried in St. Symphorien Military Cemetery.

Captain Gerald Robert O’Sullivan, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (right panel), was awarded a Victoria Cross for his heroism at Krithia on Gallipoli on the night of 1st July 1915.  Wounded during the action, he was evacuated to Egypt but would return to the peninsula to die leading his men in an assault on Hill 70 (Scimitar Hill) on 21st August 1915.  He was 26, has no known grave, and is remembered on the Helles Memorial to the Missing.

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2 Responses to Westminster Cathedral Catholic Soldiers Association Roll of Honour

  1. Margaret Draycott says:

    Nice post M, not been there myself perhaps one day but do have a couple of lovely cathedrals in my own city. Don’t understand though surely more catholics than that died in the 2 wars or am I missing something.

    • Magicfingers says:

      Hello M. You are indeed missing something – these men were members of the Catholic Soldiers Association, whatever that was, who were killed, and therefore not a Roll of all catholics killed in the wars. Hope all well.

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